Studies indicate that
depression occurs commonly in patients suffering from diabetes. This is
especially true if the person is suffering from an additional illness. Other
studies suggest that patients with depression appear to have a poorer control
of blood sugar and are more likely to suffer from diabetic complications.
A recently published study evaluated the association of depression and
control of diabetes in 70 Brazilian diabetic patients
. Diabetic patients aged
between 30 and 65 years were included in the study. Psychiatric evaluation was
carried out by a trained psychiatrist. Hemoglobin A1C levels were measured to
assess diabetes control. Nearly half of the patients included in the study were
on insulin for the treatment of their diabetes.
Out of the 70 patients included in the study, almost 20% were found to
suffer from depression and were not under treatment for this purpose. These
patients were found to have poorer control of their diabetes, as evidenced by
slightly higher HbA1C levels.
Some patients suffered from
depression earlier, but were not found to be affected by it in the evaluation
conducted during the study. These patients had similar blood glucose control to
those who had never suffered from depression.
Thus, patients with diabetes should be also assessed for the presence
of depression. If the results are positive, these patients should be followed
up more closely to ensure good control of their diabetes.
Since the study was
conducted on a very small population, a larger study would be required to
establish the results of this study.
Marcelo Papelbaum et al; Depression, glycemic control and type 2
diabetes; Diabetology & Metabolic Syndrome 2011, 3:26